Deep Dive: Morph Transition Tutorial for PowerPoint

About this lesson

Deep dive tutorial on PowerPoint Morph transition tool. Learn all about bringing your presentations to life with the cool morph actions from slide to slide. We cover everything from transforming objects and text, the trick to morph between different shapes, why your character morph does not work and how to fix it. Plus how to create a Ken Burns-like photo album or dramatic introduction of a business chart and graph.

This is part of our deep dive “All You Need to Know” Tutorials.


Chapter Contents

  • 00:00 Intro
  • 00:47 Example of Morph Working & Not Working
  • 02:09 Applicable Versions of PowerPoint
  • 02:17 Agenda for Tutorial
  • 03:00 Morphing Objects by Position
  • 03:30 Key Concept of Morphing Between Slides
  • 04:58 Morphing Objects by Size
  • 06:00 Morphing Objects by Color
  • 06:42 Morphing Objects by Orientation & Rotation
  • 07:18 Moving Objects On and Off Slide
  • 08:06 Motion Morph Entrance
  • 09:03 Dramatic Biz Chart Entrance
  • 10:21 Morphing Text
  • 10:49 Morph Font Typography
  • 12:04 Change Morph Duration Timing
  • 12:35 Morph Word Swapping
  • 13:12 Morph Effect Options – WORDS
  • 14:10 Morph Character Swapping
  • 15:18 Character Rules: Cap vs Non-Cap
  • 15:58 Morphing Between Different Shapes
  • 17:34 Selection Pane
  • 18:00 Rename Shapes with Required !!
  • 19:01 Photo Album Morph
  • 21:10 Wrap-Up


Subject Microsoft PowerPoint

Software Compatibility PowerPoint 2019 to the latest Office 365 for WIndows and macOS


Course Completed

PDF Files There are not any files associated with this lesson.



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Let’s start off looking at what might seem to be a boring transition tool.

This is a simple four slide presentation. All the slides have the MORPH transition applied and they behave so differently. Watch as we go through the slide show.

For the first slide, pay attention to the top corner image, as it is repeated on the next slide and will morph/transform into a larger image as we move to the next slide.

However, slide 2 and 3 have nothing in common, and so the MORPH transition does nothing but fade in a dull fashion.

The last pair of slides only share a red highlight bar, but as we move to the last slide, the red bar will rotate and grow to the new location.

So what the heck is going on with the Morph transition tool?

Trust me, this is really a cool and power tool, as you see in this slideshow that we will build in this tutorial.

To take control and leverage its coolness, we are about to dive in and cover all the fundamental controls of this unique PowerPoint feature.

Note that this will work with both Windows and the macOS, but only in the most recent versions of PowerPoint, espeically PowerPOint 365.

Turning on MORPH is a simple click, but it is the construction of your individaul slides that makes it shine. So that you understand all the paint brushes in your toolbox, we will cover the specific controls for morphoring OBJECTS, including the ability to control the motion of postintion, size, color and object orienation both on and off the canvas.

We will see how the morhing of text is similar but with some extra twists of changing fonts for emphasis and even fancy word and letter swapping.

I will show you how to morph from one object to another shape.

And then we will build the photo album presenation you just saw.

So let dive in. I am working on a Windows PC, but every single command will also work on the macOS version of Office 365.

Note that this a truly an empty presenation, so to morph an object, lets go find one inside of Office 365 gallary of images. I will pull up the stickers and drop in a kitten playing with a mouse.

The key to morphing is to understand that PowerPoint will attempt to interpolate the changes of known objects from one slide to the next. Let me emphasize, you create the start of the change on one slide, and the end on the next slide, and PowerPoint will figure out what changes and to a morph transiton.

So with our cat positioned, we will add a DUPLICATED slide, this time from the HOME menu, and the on the second slide, move the cat to the end point. I will also make bold the word POSITION so that we can keep track what changed.

We are not done, we now need to stay on the second slide and bring up the TRANASITION tab menu on the ribbon menu, so that we can apply the MORPH transiton to this second slide. The transiton of the first slide DOES NOT MATTER.

I will start on the preceeding slide, and in the SLIDE SHOW ribbon menu, I will select FROM CURRENT SLIDE, as we do not want to start fromt he beggining to see our two morph slides.

So let’s repeat this for changing the size. I will this time, right click on the slide and choose DUPLICATE SLIDE. I will then select the new duplicated slide and this time, move and make the cat bigger. Morph can handle multiple changes of size and position.

And for our tutorial, I will note with bold that this slide was demonstrating a size change.

We can duplicate the slide again and this time, we will change the potition and then use the PICTURE FORMAT menu to find COLOR and recolor our cat to green.

And I will run through the cat morph series from the begginging to see the move of position, the growing in size and the changing of color, slide morph by slide morph.

At this point, you should understand that PowerPoint morph in interpolating the changes in an object from slid to slide and making the necessary adjusments in as smooth of morph transition as it can.

And final object manipulation change is the rotate command, where you select your object and look for the rotation cursor grab circle to click and rotate

All of animation up to this point has been “On canvas” meaning everything is happening inside the edges of our slide. But there are some extremely effective effects when bringing morphing from off stage.

Lets create a new example with a buzzing bee sticker. I will insert the bee and resize the bee. But before we position the graphic, we need to shrink our canvas view by going to the bottom right corner of PowerPoint

There ae the controls for enlarging, or in our case shrking the view of the canvas. We are NOT changing the slide actual size, but just our zoom view of the workspace

Now we can drag our bee off the viewable canvas to create a motion based entrance on the following slide.

We then duplicate the slide, and it brings the off stage bee along with the duplication.

And we then drag the bee to the center of the slide, telling the morph command where we want the bee to land when displaying this slide.

So next, we will add the MORPh transition to the slide. And to complete our effect of the beeing flying off the page, we will create a third slide, by way of duplication, which will include the centered bee plus the morph transition. Then move the bee almost, but not quite, off the canvas.

And we are ready to see our three slide bee project in action.

However, I suspect your presenations will NOT be filled with cute kitten icons,. So here is quick example of all the same concepts but with a graph

So an a new canvas, I will add a title, position it. and then go to the INSERT menu to select a chart. Once on the page, I am closing the data sheet. Resizing the chart and then being very careful to select the edge of the graph, not any inside elements, so to drag the object off stage, much like we did with our bee sticker.

Now, duplicate the slide with the graph off stage. On the duplicated slide, I want to add some drama to the text tile, and so will repostiion and size the text box with some new text color. Then move the chart back on the page with the right sizing. And finally go to the TRANSTION MENU and turn on the MORPH effect

Note the changing text plus the graph entrance with the auto preview. BUt let’s see it on the big screen in slide show mode.

And that previews the next section: TEXT MOPHING!

We can all of the same tricks as we did with objects when applying them to text but there is more. First, let me do a speed formatting of the various techniques we applied to objects, and you will see the preview with each change, but I will slow down with the first new variation, which is changing the look of the typography font.

Here I am creating a new morph slide going from the san serf Calibri font to the fancy serif font Time Roman and we see a very SUBTLE change during the morph preview.

Now on to speed rotation, plus some resizing to fit on the page. And finally ready to see all the changes in a slide show

As we watch the changes across the slide show, I do want to point out that much of this can be done with the PowerPoint Animated Motion Path tool, (see link above for an extended tutorial) but I do find the Morph tool is much easier to control with some great effects.

Lastly, it should come as no surprise that we can move the text off stage as we did objects. Watch how I not only bring the text down below and out of frame, but also make the text much larger to give us a cooler exit effect.

This slide show text twist and grow is nice, but maybe just a little to quick. So lets modify the MORPH tranistiion effect with one of the few controls and that is changing the duration of how long it takes the morph to transpire.

So text and morp transitions work great together, but PowerPoint gives us two more slick controls with these paired together.

Lets do some word play.

The first of two is what i call WORD SWAPPING. ANd it is best to see in action. I will duplicate this slide and then on the 2nd slide change the color of the words WORD and MORPH and then doing some cut and paste, I will swap their postion.

We must not forget to add the MORPH effect from the Transition menu and the we can check it out.

But wait! If we go back to the 2nd slide and go to MORPH in transition, there is a drop down box for EFFECT OPTIONS. and there we can change the morph from OBJECT to WORD, and this will make PowerPoint more aware of the actual words on the page and how they change from slide to slide.

This can also create a slick effect if we are just changing some of the words, such as adding a 2nd slide that will change quater 1 to quarter 2 and the aurter two results do a down 19%. And I will add some color to the 2nd slide for emphasis.

Note during the slide show how the words starting with QUARTER SALES litterally moves to the right

The second special text morph effect is a variation of WORD SWAP, it is down to the CHARACTER SWAP where we are moving indvidaul letters, not whole words.

For our example I am duplicating the slide that holds the words CHEATER AND TEACHER. They are anagrams of each other, meaning they have the same letters, but just rearranged.

In the project example, we have CHEATER on the fist slide and then on the 2nd morph slide, we have TEACHER.

And we change the EFFECT OPTOIN for MORPH to CHACTERS.

And I will repeat this for phrases sweep the floor and too few helpers, which is another pair of anagrams. But you will see that if you have too many characgters, it kind of loses it coolness as it become too busy.

Now here is a classic slide tranformation of the alphabet morphing to a word or two. The reason I am showing this, is to point out that morphing from slide to slide is CAPITUALIZATION specific. The first example works as all the leters are caps, but in our second try, I am making the word Simple Example have only the first letter capitialized and when the slide show goes, you will see that only the capial S and E morph

Morphing does a pretty good job moving shapes & text, and even transforming sizes, but what about morphing to a different shape?

Yes, it can, but with simple objects.

Let’s try first unsuccessfully and then succesfully.

We will drop a triangle shape and then go back and add a circle. Lets color them to see the both a shape shift and a color morph.

As always, we will duplicate the slide and then take off the circle from the first slide and the triangle from the 2nd target morph slide. and now we can test it out in a slide show.,

But this is a fail. the triangle fades out and the circle fades in. No movement and no shape shifting.

But Why? Well we have not told powerpoint that these objects are linked and that we want them to morph.

Each object has a unique name per slide. And PowerPoint will morph matching object names between slides. We have been getting our morphs becuase we DUPLICATE the first slide and the duplicated slide will have the same names. But our triangle and Circle are named differently with unique names.

To see the names, you need to select an object to get the context menu of SHAPE FORMAT, and then find the action icon called SELECTION PANE (for more on selection pane, see our YouTube tutoiral listed above)

Once turned on, all the shape objects are listed in the right hand pane. In our case, we have three objects and our triangle is called ISSOCELES TRAINGLE 4 while on the second slide, the circle is named OVAL 5.

In a busy slide, you will need to click the object have it highlighted so you will know what to rename.

I will double click on the name to edit and here is the KEY. Not only do the two objects on different slides have to have the exact same name, but the name MUST start with TWO EXCLAMATION MARKS. In our case we will call each one !!newname for both objects

Now PowerPoint will know to morph the newly name triangle into the new rename cirlce. Watch the morph color AND SHAPE between slides.

Now for our last project, creating a very cool photo album effect. I will start off by quickly dropping four seperate photos on the canvas.

As I speed through the setup, I am shrnking them all to a standardize 1.6 inch high thumbnail and then moving them all to the far right of our canvas. And using various align tools to make them look centered to each other and eualily distributed apart

Next, I want to give all four photo a specail look, wo in thePCITURE FORMAT, I will select theoval picture frame

With our foundation slide built we will duplicate the slide and turn on the TRANSITON MORPH for The 2nd slide.

Lets duplicate slide #2 three more times for the last three photos to be morphed.

Now lets build out the four photo slides. On slide two, I will drag the top thumbnail photo to the center of the slide, resize it and change the PICTURE FORMAT photo frame to display the full image.

Here is a sneak preview of how it will work.

Great, so lets zip through doing the same steps on the last three slides of draging the next oval thumbnail to the center, resizing and changing the picture frame. Repeating the process for the other two photos.

And we are now ready to test out our last tutorial project in the slide show mode.

Watch the smooth transiton of the photo chaning shape, location and photo frame in and out as we move thorugh the slides. This should serve as an inspiration to use the morph tool to create truely unique and stunning presenationt.